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Water’s Soul: The Meaning Behind Jersey City’s Newest Statue

 By this time, you probably have noticed the 80 ft tall statue on the edge of Newport Pier in Jersey City. The statue is called “Water’s Soul” by a Spanish artist Jaume Plensa that depicts a woman with a finger to her lips. The way it faces the NYC skyline makes it seem like the woman is “shushing” the NYC skyline. 

LeFrak and Simon, developers of Newport, chose the world renowned artist Jaume Plensa for this project for his ability to convey a collective hope for humanity’s future. Looking across the Hudson River, Water’s Soul acknowledges the surrounding waterfronts, aligning with Plensa’s ongoing engagement and interest in waterfront spaces as proxies for humankind. Water’s Soul is the neighborhood’s first public art installation by an international artist.

Water's Soul: Dedication, grand opening for 80-foot sculpture by Jaume  Plensa in Jersey City - ABC7 New York

“It is my wish for Water’s Soul to become an icon for Newport and a landmark that visually connects it with New York City across the Hudson River,” said Plensa. “Just as Water’s Soul acts to unite the City of Jersey City and New York City, we are reminded that water is the great public space that unites and embraces communities as well as people around the world.” 

A large majority of Plensa’s work includes sculptures in public spaces. Plensa’s public art installations can be found in Spain, France, Japan, England, Korea, Germany, and Canada. The sculptures are usually over-sized heads, torsos, or spheres. 

You can visit Water’s Soul along the Newport waterfront at 15 14th St, Jersey City (by the Ellipse apartments). Find more information about Barcelona-born artist Jaume Plensa on his website.

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